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Poster: k-otic Date: Jun 29, 2005 4:35am
Forum: faqs Subject: Public Domain List/Search Engine

is there a list/search engine where i can look if an certain title is public domain or not ??

This post was modified by k-otic on 2005-06-29 11:35:37

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Poster: Administrator, Curator, or Staffakb Date: Jun 29, 2005 6:03am
Forum: faqs Subject: Re: Public Domain List/Search Engine

Not really. The USG values the public domain so little that they have not bothered to digitize the relevant copyright records. The authoritative way to really know is to either go to the Library of Congress in DC and look through a card catalog or you can pay the Copyright Office ~$75 to do the search for you.

Less certain ways to know would be to look at various footage sale sites (retrofilm.com, desertislandfilms.com) or to look for really cheap DVDs on Amazon.

There is a publication called "The Superlist" where someone took books from the Copyright Office that listed motion picture registrations and researched renewals. Its right most of the time, however, it doesn't take into account music and other secondary rights. A couple set of volumes probably costs around $1000.

Skip has access to the Superlist and has said he will look things up in it for people that want to upload them to the Archive.

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Poster: Administrator, Curator, or StaffDiana Hamilton Date: Jun 29, 2005 7:55am
Forum: faqs Subject: Re: Public Domain List/Search Engine

Reference books are listed on this page at bottom:
http://www.loc.gov/rr/mopic/pubdomain.html

I found reference to one just by looking in a local library's card catalog:

Hurst, Walter E. Film superlist: 20,000 motion pictures in the public domain, by Johnny Minus and William Storm Hale. Hollywood, Calif., 7 Arts Press [1973]
Reference - PN1998 - .M33

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Poster: k-otic Date: Jun 30, 2005 6:18am
Forum: faqs Subject: Re: Public Domain List/Search Engine

first of all thank you for the fast response

for example:
i like to upload peter jackson`s first (cult)movie "bad taste" from 1987
http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0092610
many public domain list`s are showing this title as public domain movie but i`m not really sure about it
what can happen when i upload by mistake an copyrighted movie to the archive ??

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Poster: Administrator, Curator, or Staffakb Date: Jun 30, 2005 7:38am
Forum: faqs Subject: Re: Public Domain List/Search Engine

Foreign copyright adds another vast layer of complexity to the problem. I believe NZ is a signatory to the Berne Convention so I would tend to think that post 1976 works would be automatically protected and that protection would be respected by the US. However, I think the timing and exactly when a country adopted Berne and also US laws concerning restoration of foreign copyrights can come into play.

So, long story short, you should only rely on information you get from a lawyer that specializes in the area because anyone else would probably have no clue.

And remember, don't believe anything you read on the Internet :)

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